It's official now...

I’ve been posting here for a little while, and today I officially became a “student” again! I gave my 3 week resignation at work yesterday, and today I went to my campus and purchased my irst textbook:Precalculus. The significance of all this is starting to hit me, and I’m scared, a little depressed even! I am excited about my new
journey, but I felt so “old” and out of place among these 19-year olds (I am 31). I’ve decided to stay as far away from that campus as possible and do my studying near my city’s library or the cafe. Seeing those young faces made me sad to think of how I wasted precious opportunities when I was that young…But now I have the wisdom and determination to turn over a new page. Few people seem to understand what it’s like to do what we are going through as OPM members-I haven’t even told my family yet, I doubt they would understand let alone offer much emotional support. So, it’s a lonely road ahead! I am grateful for this forum, I never would have had the courage to even begin this jouney if it were not for the people here.
On a happier note, verything so far seems to be falling into place nicely-my financial aid, and I also spoke with someone about volunteering at a hospice next month. My area of interest is oncology, so it’s exciting. Well, sorry for rambling such a stream of consciousness, but I needed to let it out.Thanks for listening.

Claudette, No need to apologize for anything. We’re all working within our own time-frame. Congratulations on taking the first step!

Good luck, Claudette! I’ve found the “kids” are actually very supportive, and I’ve had some good study group partners in the young age group. My family surprised me as well. I thought they’d be worried about me (and they are, a bit) but mostly they’re very proud. You have to tell people in your own good time, and some people will feel compelled to discourage you, but support is all around you, in the most unlikely places.
Welcome aboard and happy studying!

Congrats Claudette! I know what you mean about being depressed, but once you start learning, it will all come together. I have to say that one of the young’uns in my class and I get together to study, and she has excellent study habits. I am learning a lot about preparation, and testing yourself before the exam.

Congratulations on taking that first step back into the world of academia!
I’m 30 (turning 31 this spring) and just started back to school this winter. It was a tough adjustment at first but now I feel like I never left school!
Good luck and have fun with your classes!

I just started classes (part-time) as well and turn 30 in July. It does feel a bit awkward at first but once you’re in the swing of the semester you will no longer feel out of place.
Best wishes to you!

Congratulations on taking the first step! I’ll be joining you in the “deep end” this fall when I quit my job and become a full-time student again. I’m currently in the “shallow end” with only 1 class (also PreCalc so I feel your pain) and a FT job. I’m excited and scared at the same time. I’ll be 29 next month but I think I still look young enough to “pass” for a tradtional student…
maybe…we’ll see.

Hi claudette737
I hope you don’t feel sad too long. It is natural to have feelings of regret for not getting started ealier, but don’t let them hang around you too long.
I found myself feeling sad for the young students who didn’t care about school, who slacked off because their parents were paying the tutition bills, who skipped class because they didn’t feel like being there. Those are the ones I felt sad for once I started classes in 1998.
Be proud of yourself and what you can acomplish!!!

I used to fret a bit about things I should have started earlier but stopped because it is a waste of time and because I wasn’t ready to do this then. It took me getting a littl older and maybe wiser to discover what I want to do.

I’ll be 34 this year, but age hasn’t been a factor at all with my classmates. Just do well and all they’ll talk about are your grades, not your age. Good luck!

Yup, the younger students really admire the older students. When I was in school, my husband used to call me the “The den mother” of all the students in my classes. They would ask me questions about life, what should they do about their parents, about their boyfriends/girlfriends, with their lives, etc…
I ended up as the president of the Pre-Med Society for 2 years because the other pre-meds looked up to me and respected me for my years of life long experiences.
So even though you are older, you will be surprised at the respect you will earn from your fellow classmates.

Don’t feel too old, to me you’re young! I’m 40 and just starting some prereqs and finishing a BS. You’re only as old as you feel.

I saw an ad in Union Station recently that promoted a product that made you ‘look as young as you feel.’ As I feel about 150, that doesn’t help!
But it’s true. Age is just a number.

I take care of alot of elderly people in hospice and they agree that in thier mind time has flown and 18 seemed like yesterday. I think it’s all attitude. Don’t waste so much time
dwelling on "could of, would of, should of"
Just my 4 cents (inflation).

I’m so glad you wrote about your spunky dilemma! I’m in the same boat. Leaning towards quitting the jobbie (though I haven’t handed in that resignation yet) and studying F/T to get BCMP done a little over a year. That said, it’ll be expensive but heck I just can’t juggle day-time classes with a mgmt. position.
Anyhoo - do write and let us know how things are going.
Or gripe at the very least. )
And whild I’m here __ does anyone not recommend quitting your job?__ Just curious.
I appreciate feedback (all kinds)!

Maybe I ought to go to my boss’s office tomorrow and kiss her feet. I have a management job, but have been able to schedule classes during the day. Good luck has helped: I work on a university campus, and state budget cuts allowed me to offer to cut down to an 80% appointment. I could quit my job when my husband finishes his biology degree, but it’s becoming the saga of the Thesis that Would not Die; we could be graduating together at this rate.

Hi Claudette, I’m totally going through the same thing. I gave my notice at work last Monday and this Friday will be my last day. I bought my textbooks online through and saved a bundle. Anyhow, I’m so excited and a little nervous. Luckily, I’ll be in a post-bac program geared towards people like me - career changers. So I won’t feel old or out of place with those people…however, I am sure that will be the case in medical school. Hell, I might even end up in the same medical school class with my “little cousin.” It’s a little frightning so much. It’s a big risk and time is a luxury we no longer have, but was time ever ours…after all, that’s how we got here…by passing the time. Anyhow, it’s been a long-winded road, but I’m glad this is road I took. I know I wouldn’t have had the foresight, confidence, and life experience at 18 to believe this dream was possible. I believe that all my steps in life have led me here. Anyhow, sorry for the tangent, but you’ll do fine and whenever you feel overtaken by the youngins come to OPM and you’ll always be in good company here!

I think we all understand some of what you feel being in class with “the youngins.” Don’t beat yourself up about wasting precious time. You have to look at it as during that time you were in the process of becoming who you are today, the person who is ready to take on this task that requires a lot of commitment, determination and maturity. I’m also 31, attending a university full of 19 year olds. Sometimes I lament at the time gone by, but I tell myself to use the experience I have gained thoughout these years to help me in this undertaking.
It can be a bit lonely on campus where there are not too many of us “old folks” wandering the halls, but I have found that I have a unique opportunity to offer some advice and perspective to younger students. Also, getting to know some of your professors can help you to feel more connected on campus, they usually respond very positively to older re-entry students.
It’s too bad that you feel you can’t tell your family as they can be an important source of support. You may want to try to talk to them about it, give them an opportunity to be supportive…you never know, maybe if you express your true desire to do this they will be able to get behind you. I do, however understand your reservations. Although my family isn’t unsupportive, it’s like they are afraid to be fully supportive for fear that I won’t make it. It’s like they are reserving judgement until they are sure of the outcome.
Keep you eyes peeled on campus for others like yourself, and if you can’t find anyone there, you know where to come for an attentive ear from people who understand where you are.
Good job on taking the leap!! Don’t lose faith!

That’s awesome that your boss is so accommodating. How many classes are you taking per semester?
I was looking to take 3 or 4 classes per semester to finish in as little time as possible. As I alluded to earlier, it was frustrating to be late 50% of the time to class and doesn’t look good to my peers to leave work early either.
Unlikely that my boss would let me work the graveyard shift but I’ll keep probing!

Hi Spunky, I think 3-4 classes is a lot. Most formal programs that carry this kind of courseload really discourage students from working part-time, much less full-time. Don’t forget that you need time to study, rest, etc. If you go to school full-time (taking all sciences) and work full-time even if on alternate schedules (work during day/class at night or class during day/work at night), you run a risk of spreading yourself too thin. While it’s not impossible to overcome bad grades from your past, it is increasingly more difficult if these grades are more recent. I think it’s easier to pay back a loan, than it is to recover from a poor grade at this stage in the game. Be careful.